We’re excited to mark an important and awesome milestone: 20 years in business at ARInsights! Before there were iPhones or tablets — and when dial-up connections were still a thing (though fading) — ARInsights was helping analyst relations (AR) professionals, in their then-nascent roles, succeed and drive visibility among the analyst community.

While the technology and services we offer have greatly matured — and the scope of AR has likewise expanded and evolved — we’ve remained steadfast in our mission to bolster AR productivity and empower AR pros to drive meaningful business value.

We’re incredibly proud of the results achieved by our clients: spanning some of the largest AR programs in the world, all the way down to single-person teams. We’re also proud to have created — and continually strive to maintain — an engaging, collaborative and supportive work environment that exudes our core values and supports a fun, outstanding and highly motivated team. Many of these team members have been at ARInsights since its early days and are part of the “heartbeat” of our business.

We chatted with some of these longtimers — as well as some relative newcomers to the company (who’ve been in AR for quite some time) — about changes, fond memories and milestones in the field and at our company. Longtime customers chimed in too. Getting and continuing to work with all these amazing people has been a treat, and sharing their insights with you is the icing on our birthday cake. Read on for their insights!

* Thoughts from our customers *

Q: How has ARchitect supported you in your role over the years? What are some of the biggest AR changes you’ve seen in your career?

From Gerry Van Zandt, Senior Director, Analyst Relations, Alteryx

“I’ve been using ARchitect since I joined HP’s analyst relations team back in 2008. Looking back, that’s 16 years ago! And ARchitect has been a vital component of the AR programs at the two companies I’ve worked at since — Oracle and Alteryx. It’s hard for me to imagine a well-running analyst program WITHOUT ARchitect at its center, to be honest. The continual expansion and integration of its capabilities, designed specifically with the AR pro’s needs in mind, are what sets ARInsights apart from other solutions. Key features such as event and project management, Premium Content and ever-better reporting/dashboarding have increased the value of ARInsights to me over the years. In recent years I’ve been happy to see even more investment going into the product.

As for changes in the field, two of the biggest sea changes I’ve seen have been: 

  • The continuing consolidation in the ranks of analyst firms, which doesn’t seem to be slowing down; and
  • The blurring of many traditional analysts into “influencers” — a trend that I believe has some downsides to it. That said, there continues to be a strong market for objective advisors that help enterprises navigate their IT challenges. I don’t see that changing.

Q: How have you used ARchitect over the years? Has it helped you address the changing AR landscape?

From Carter Lusher, Analyst Relations Pro and AR Community Advisor; Former Gartner Analyst

“Wow, ARchitect is celebrating its 20th birthday! ARchitect has been part of my AR toolbox for nearly… 20 years. I first discovered ARchitect when I was the director of corporate AR at HP, back in the early 2000s. I was frustrated with the hours and grueling effort required to generate management reports and track the activities of my team of four AR pros. I needed a tool that could automate and streamline these tasks, and that’s when I reached out to ARInsights. They showed me how ARchitect could capture, monitor and analyze all the analyst interactions and I immediately grokked the value. Once my team got into the habit of capturing all our activity in real time, the reporting went from many painful hours per week to 15 minutes through ARchitect — which meant I could then concentrate on the more valuable parts of the job.  

Since then, I have used ARchitect in every AR job I have had: from Informatica to Zuora to e2open. ARchitect became the first app I opened in the morning and the last one I closed in the evening. 

I have also witnessed how ARchitect has evolved and adapted to the changing landscape of the AR industry. Two trends that stand out for me are the increasing proliferation and diversification of influencers and the demise of the in-person briefing roadshow. ARchitect has helped me manage these trends by providing me with access to thousands of influencers, from those at “The Big Three” to boutiques, specialty firms and solo practitioners. This has been especially useful when I had to enter new markets or deal with acquisitions, where I didn’t have established relationships with the relevant analysts. ARchitect also made it easy to move to digital and juggle all the different types of interactions, from webinars to conference calls to blogs and tweets, and not let any analyst fall through the cracks.

ARchitect has been more than just a tool for me. It has been a trusted companion, a source of insight and a partner in success. I want to congratulate the ARInsights team for 20 years of innovation and excellence, and for keeping AR professionals like me sane. I look forward to many more years of collaboration and growth with ARchitect.”

* Thoughts from ARInsights employees *

Q: What changes have you seen in your role at ARInsights over the years?

From Patricia Cooper, Director of Client Services and Database Content, ARInsights

“I’ve been at ARInsights since the very beginning, back when it was called SageCircle. I remember creating the very first analyst profile in ARchitect… which looked very different than it does now! Although ARchitect still had the basics then – providing analysts’ photos, bios, contact info and coverage areas, and enabling users to log their interactions – it didn’t have many of the collaborative, research-focused and project management capabilities we have today, or the ability to connect to other systems. In ARInsights’ early days, I was also in charge of making a backup of every profile in our database: putting the information, including pictures, in an Excel spreadsheet. Now, of course, this is much more automated, secure and cloud-based.  

We’ve grown a lot in 20 years… from that first profile to now housing more than 10,000 in our database — spanning not just traditional analysts, but also other B2B influencers as well, with more than 1,700 firms included. And outside the database, ARchitect’s other features, and our complementary solutions and services, have become much more robust and well-rounded to help AR pros in many aspects of their roles.

Two decades in, I still get a lot of fulfillment out of making sure ARchitect’s database and capabilities meet and exceed our customers’ needs. In my role here, I also love the flexibility of working from home, and working with our clients and the analysts themselves.”

Q: How has your role changed at ARInsights? What do you love about working here, and what are some of your favorite memories? 

From Ed Capps, VP of Global Sales, ARInsights 

“I’ve been at ARInsights for almost 15 years. When I joined back in 2009, I was one of only four full-time employees — and I was our only salesperson until 2017. One thing that’s stayed the same is our work environment; ARInsights has been remote-first since Day 1, with our employees working virtually.

There are a lot of things I love about working here: The people at ARInsights are a big one! My colleagues have incredible integrity and strong work ethics, and they care deeply about our customers and each other. I also really value the relationships I’ve built here over the years: both with coworkers and with the AR community across the globe. Another thing I appreciate about ARInsights is our size and agility. We don’t have many layers of management, so decisions can be made quickly.

As for favorite memories — there are many! Building relationships with coworkers and AR pros ranks high on the list, as does helping grow ARInsights into a world-class technology company. I’ve also enjoyed traveling in my role: going across the country with Crystal Golightly [our VP of CX]; visiting London, Barcelona and Paris for work; and closing business in Central London’s Trafalgar Square. There have also been many great AR networking happy hours and ARchitect User Forums over the years. And I can’t forget to mention how happy I feel in selecting and collecting the best marketing tchotchke in the industry: Each year, you’ve gotta have an ARInsights pen!”

Q: How has AR — and ARInsights — changed during your time at the company? What are some of your favorite company memories and favorite parts about working here?

From Crystal Golightly, VP of Customer Experience & Operations

“I’ve spent almost 13 years at ARInsights. When I first started, many businesses still didn’t have dedicated AR roles or understand AR’s value. So, going from a little-known role to a strategic tool in companies’ overall plans, AR has come a long way! I’ve also seen firsthand how valuable analysts and analyst relations are to technology companies. In the years ahead, I look forward to ARInsights further helping analysts and AR pros learn from each other, share information in more ways and collaborate even better.

We’re constantly making memories here! One of my favorite ones is from about a dozen years ago. After our User Forum in Palo Alto, the team — then five of us — went to the Sutro Baths along the shoreline of Lands End in San Francisco for a hike. The views and the team-building were both amazing!

I also REALLY, REALLY love my coworkers here. For a long time, our customers would say to us, ‘It seems like you guys all really like each other.’ And our response was always, ‘It doesn’t just seem that way; we actually really do!’ This group is the greatest, and I can still say that today.”

Q: What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen at ARInsights and among customers?

From Aaron Avallon, Senior Director of Sales, ARInsights

“I’ve worked at ARInsights for six years. During my tenure, some of the biggest changes and milestones have been Polaris Growth Fund backing ARInsights [in 2020], ARInsights’ recent acquisition of Wind Communications [January 2024], and major enhancements to ARchitect in the last year or so — including interactive analytics, generative AI capabilities, LinkedIn and peer review data in Premium Content, and more. What’s interesting is that these changes have all been recent ones — the AR space is really fast-moving right now, and we work hard to help keep customers future-ready. As for changes among our customers, I see a greater emphasis on measuring AR’s impact and tying their AR program efforts directly to business results, such as increased revenue. Many AR pros are also changing mindsets at their organizations: spreading awareness among executives that AR success is more than moving a dot up and to the right — there are many other ways to drive value from analyst relationships and insights.”

Q: What are some key changes in the AR profession over the past 20 years? 

From Greg Wind, VP of Services, ARInsights (co-founder of The Wind Communications Agency, newly acquired by ARInsights)

“I’ve been at ARInsights for just over a week, but over the previous decade-plus, I’ve been an avid user of ARchitect and a fan of the company. In my time doing analyst relations, the work itself has changed substantially, but the most impactful shift is in how analyst relations has been viewed by others. Analyst relations, once mysterious, is now at or near the top of the agenda for marketers, sales teams and senior leadership at many companies. In turn, analyst relations has developed a better understanding of needs across the organization — and how AR can help. The impacts range from better sharing and application of relevant analyst insights, more specialization in analyst relations roles, easier access to resources inside the company and, importantly, higher expectations for performance. Luckily, the smart, capable and professional people I’ve met in my time doing AR welcome the challenge, and I believe AR’s best days are still ahead of us. Here’s to the next 20 years!”